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Poster: grendelschoice Date: Nov 23, 2007 5:45am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Let's talk Orwell (1984)

OK, I'd love to get some feedback on this much-maligned year in Dead history.

it's generally agreed upon that '84 was a rough year for the boys--most likely due to Jerry's morphing into something akin to a giant emperor penguin on smack prone to nodding off and bouncing his beak into the mic during long musical interludes.

And yet....

the more I just poke around shows in '84 I find un-debatable scintillating gems, a la the Greek 7/13/84, a wonderful show capped off by a freaking (great) Dark Star encore.

Or 7/22/84 Ventura, Cty., which again is a fine overall show highlighted among other things by a top 3 all-time "Loser"...

Want to hear what is possibly the most high-octane rock and roll version of Scarlet>Fire ever played? Check out 4/20/84.

There are those that insist the last best Jack Straw was played in '84 at the Syracuse Carrier Dome...

...and if for some reason you have yet to hear the magnificence that is Augusta, Maine 10/12/84, you have yet to hear one of the greatest Grateful Dead shows ever played.

So what's going on here? Was Jerry's undeniably grotesque physical appearance influencing our perceptions of the shows played in '84? Or are the examples I've cited merely anectdotal exceptions to the rule? amongst big whoop.

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Poster: BryanE Date: Nov 23, 2007 7:47am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Let's talk Orwell (1984)

He was well on his way toward heading off the deep end health-wise by the time I saw the Alpine Valley shows in '84, but it wasn't until the '85 shows that I thought he was really letting himself go: instead of the customary black t, apparently the only thing he could find that would fit anymore was something that looked more like a big red muu-muu than a shirt. And it was during that run of shows that even I began to question if my hero still had it---pretty ragged nights that he was obviously struggling to get through.

But in spite of the fact that he was getting unpleasantly plump by the time of those '84 shows, they were just as hot as a pistol as far as I'm concerned--7/6 was one of the best I ever saw.

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Poster: AshesRising Date: Nov 23, 2007 7:42am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Let's talk Orwell (1984)

grendelschoice: I hate that depiction of Jerry - he deserves more respect for everything he gave to us. He was just a regular guy who worked all-the-f#ckin-time to share what he found inside the music.

I recall 1984 as being a year that combined a ton of energy with what appeared to be a deliberate effort to transform the "familiar" into [ ....whatever they uncovered.... ]. I recall feeling "mesmerized" by the music much more than the previous 5 years of tours; it felt like the energy and power remained constant throughout a tour as opposed to the ebb-and-flow experience of previous years.

One of the shows you mention has an example that can explain it much better than me: Friday, July 13. That "Scarlet > Touch of Grey > Fire on the Mountain" is crackling with the scintillating energy that was pervasive that year. It's also an example of how they transformed the "familiar" into something "other."

But that is through my biased, subjective eyes that still don't see,
--- AshesRising

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Poster: caspersvapors Date: Nov 23, 2007 7:51pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Let's talk Orwell (1984)

10/12/84 has one of my favorite Dew's ever, Jerry gives a perfect vocal peformance on that one

dunno about syracuse 84 having the last great JS ever, as a matter of fact i know thats horseshit, refer to the JS from view from the vault 4

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Poster: Arbuthnot Date: Nov 23, 2007 11:37am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Let's talk Orwell (1984)

Charlotte, SC
the china>rider is a good'un




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Poster: grendelschoice Date: Nov 23, 2007 1:40pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Let's talk Orwell (1984)

Ashes: Rest assured, I meant no disrespect. No matter what he looked like I always loved--and WILL always love--the man who gave us all that transcendent music. Still--you have to admit, there's a reason we started seeing bumper stickers in '84 that read "The Fat Man Rocks."

ByanE: Your assesment of '85 is--sorry--dead on. I consider 1985 a far weaker year for Jerry--and the whole band, actually, than any other except for '86 and '95. I still regret that I saw more shows in '85 than any other year (I started in '79 and finished in '94). The one exception--meaning a truly great show--from '85 that I saw was at SPAC, but there are so many clunkers in '85 that I think '84 seriously kicks its ass.

Thanks for the recommendations on 10/5/84 and 7/6/84...both of which i have yet to explore. Will do so when time allows.

Any other '84 recommendations highly welcomed.

(and SDH--, how great would it be to have a pristine, officially-produced CD set of 10/12/84? You listening, Rhino? ;-)

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Poster: cousinkix1953 Date: Nov 23, 2007 11:57pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Let's talk Orwell (1984)

Here is a few more good shows fom 1984...

4-6 aladin theatre - las vegas nevada
4-7 irvine meadows ampitheatre - irvine california
5-6 silva hall / hult center - eugene oregon
5-7 silva hall / hult center - eugene oregon
6-9 cal-expo ampitheatre - sacramento california
6-10 cal-expo ampitheatre - sacramento california
6-14 redrocks ampitheatre - morrison colorado
6-26 merriweatherpost pavilion - columbia maryland
6-27 merriweatherpost pavilion - columbia maryland
6-30 sports and music center - indianapolis indiana
7-4 five seasons center - cedar rapids iowa
7-13 greek theatre - berkeley california
7-14 greek theatre - berkeley california
7-15 greek theatre - berkeley california
7-21 county fairgrounds - ventura california
7-22 county fairgrounds - ventura california
10-8 the centrum - worcester massachusetts
10-9 the centrum - worcester massachusetts
11-2 community theatre - berkeley california
12-31 civic auditorium - san francisco california

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Poster: dirtybuck Date: Nov 24, 2007 12:13pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Let's talk Orwell (1984)

83 and 84..
to each his own.. for me it's almost all i listen to.
the band was smoking. jerry was very much in control of his talent.the dope,health issues were right around the corner.
but the dead were still a big secret and the boys were in their early forties,brent was coming in to full bloom.
many shows/songs are over looked. the dragon was breathing fire big time back then and in my opinion it peaked at the end of the year,and began going downhill after garcia's jan. bust. of course 85 was smoking too..but be there back then was a treat.84 was great,83 even better.

hampton 4/14 -terrapin and a mean dew.
providence scarlet / fire dew..
red rocks first fantasy !
charlotte, richmond and worchester (especially 10/9)
s.f. civic -first show of the new years run..(the highest energy west coast show i ever saw)

great stuff !

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Poster: SomeDarkHollow Date: Nov 23, 2007 7:15am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Let's talk Orwell (1984)

Indeed, this was the year of "Don't Judge A Book By It's Cover". The analogy to a narcoleptic penguin is dead on in my opinion, but a penguin who was capable of some stunning performances while awake. In addtion to the shows you identified (I am in full agreement on the Augusta show), I also would mention 10/05/84 Charlotte. Fine, fine show with Jerry displaying the same fluid finger work that featured so prominently at Augusta the following week.

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Poster: grendelschoice Date: Nov 23, 2007 7:29am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Let's talk Orwell (1984)

Excellent, SDH...that 10/5 show is one I'm not aware of and will check it out!